Lennie's American Dream

1481 Words 6 Pages
The “American Dream” is a set of standards that include the freedoms given to America to achieve what was thought to be impossible during the Great Depression: “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” In Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck the two main characters, Lennie and George, dream of owning a farm and living off the “fatta the lan.” Steinbeck describes the lives of these two best friends, who are also poor migrant workers, on their journey to live their dream. The novel begins with Lennie and George obtaining work at a nearby ranch to assist in supporting their dream of owning a farm. At the ranch, Lennie accidentally breaks a woman’s neck and gets in great trouble. In an instant, George takes a gun and shoots Lennie, his forever …show more content…
Lennie’s dream is affected dramatically because of his mental disability. When Lennie talks during his interview with the boss at the ranch, he gets in serious trouble with George while the other ranchers learn that something is off with Lennie’s psychological capability. The event where the ranch owner’s wife is killed because of Lennie’s obsession with soft items, places Lennie in a big dilemma as well. This eventually ends Lennie’s life when all the ranch workers retaliate against him. The physical strength Lennie portrays also affects his chances at his “American Dream.” Lennie’s fight with Curley causes the ranch hands to be upset because Lennie is unable to control his actions. He continues fighting past his limit without knowing he is doing so. The death of the innocent puppy shows that Lennie is not trying to hurt anyone, but his physical strength gets in the way. Lennie truly believes that George would not let him tend to the rabbits at their dream farm because of his physical power. Lastly, Lennie’s intellectual age of a child is confusing to the ranchers because of his physical age, which again affects his “American Dream.” Snorting around in the dirty river water shows Lennie’s true mental age. His naive actions have Slim comparing him to a child, even though he has the physical body of an adult male. Lennie is significantly discriminated against in both occurrences because of his physical age. Overall, Lennie’s “American Dream” of owning a ranch with George is not foreseeable because of the discriminations that occur during this time in history. It is inevitable that Lennie can achieve his “American

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